Ten years in, public health advocates are calling Iowa’s smoking ban a success.
Iowa’s Smokefree Air Act was signed by then-Gov. Chet Culver in 2008, effectively banning the use of cigarettes in most of the state’s businesses and public facilities.
Iowans were persuaded by research showing secondhand smoke is detrimental to health. For years, the danger of secondhand smoke was beyond all reasonable doubt. However, newer research is raising skepticism about the threat posed by secondhand smoke, and the effectiveness of smoking bans like Iowa’s. A 2013 study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute ” which has a long-standing bias against tobacco use ” found œno link” between lung cancer and passive smoking. One of the largest research projects of its kind, the study found smokers are 13 times more likely to develop lung cancer, but among non-smokers, no statistically significant increase in lung cancer could be found.